No. 37
27 November 1858
I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication No 20 of the 16th September last. 1
2. It is to me a most satisfactory and encouraging circumstance that Her Majesty's GovernmentcontinueManuscript image continue to approve of my proceedings in administering the Government of British Columbia. I feel truly grateful for your kind support, and in consequence more capable of encountering the difficulties with which, though in a lesser degree, we are still beset.
3. I have, with much pleasure, and according to your instructions, conveyed to Captain Prevost and Captain Richards, the officers commanding H.M.S. "Satellite" and "Plumper," your acknowledgementsManuscript image for the cordial assistance which they have rendered to this Government, whenever their services were required, and they are gratified by the compliment.
4. Her Majesty's Government may feel assured that I will endeavour to dispense as much as possible, with the use of military assistance in administering the affairs of Government; and I have no doubt that with time, and when there is a fixed population, having vested rights, and interests at stake in the Country; that a military force may, in a great measure,becomeManuscript image become unnecessary; but until those changes take place, I would strongly recommend the maintenance of a respectable military or naval force, to represent the power and uphold the dignity of Her Majesty's Government.
5. I would also take the liberty of suggesting the employment of one or two Gun boats, of light draught, for the protection of the public revenue, and also for conveying Government stores and troops from one part of the coast to another, a service that cannot be effected in country ships,withoutManuscript image without much delay and enormous expense.
6. Those vessels will also be urgently required for the protection of persons who may be induced by the revocation of the Hudson's Bay Company's licence, to embark in the trade of the coast, north of Fraser's River, with the numerous and warlike Tribes of Indians, inhabiting that part of British Columbia, and who will not fail to demand the protection of Government; so obviously requisite in the prosecution of their commercial pursuits.
7. Rear AdmiralBaynesManuscript image Baynes, with whom I have conversed on the subject, is of opinion that those Gunboats are also capable of navigating Fraser's River, and it is certain that their presence would have a powerful and salutary influence on the foreign population of the Country.
8. The Rear Admiral is also of opinion that two of those vessels might be detached without inconvenience from the fleet now employed on the coast of China, a circumstance which I submit for your consideration, andmostManuscript image most earnestly hoping that the suggestion may be favorably entertained.
9. It is perhaps unnecessary to occupy your time with remarks concerning the privileges of the Hudson's Bay Company, which have ceased to exist in British Columbia.
10. We have succeeded with difficulty in preventing the unlawful occupation of the public domain, and I look forward with anxiety for Colonel Moody's arrival to commence the survey and allotment of land in British Columbia.
11. I observe theappointmentManuscript image appointment of Mr W. Hanley [Hamley] to the office of Collector of Customs for British Columbia, and that he was to sail in the "Thames City," in a few days from the date of your Despatch.
12. My own views entirely concur with your remarks—on the great importance, to the general social welfare and dignity of the Colony, that gentlemen should be encouraged to come to this country by the hope of obtaining professional occupation, as Stipendary Magistrates or in other respectable public appointments; and there are really very few persons, theofficersManuscript image officers of the Hudson's Bay Company excepted, qualified to fill offices of trust and responsibility, and I would remark in reference to the Officers of the Hudson's Bay Company, that they are engaged in other pursuits, and have in no instance been appointed to any office under Government nor do any of them appear disposed to accept of any public employment.
13. I would for those reasons recommend that careful appointments should be made in England.ThereManuscript image There is here a wide field for such situations, and the qualities requisite are integrity, sobriety, firmness, zeal, industry, implicit obedience to orders, and a practical acquaintance with the nature of the duties to be performed.
14. I shall most gladly attend to your wishes for any newspapers containing matter worthy of attention, and shall not fail to inform you of everything of importance thatpassesManuscript image passes in British Columbia.
I have etc.
James Douglas
Minutes by CO staff
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Mr Merivale
Sir E. Lytton more than once expressed himself in favor of sending gun boats of light draught to B. Columbia, but positive orders to that effect to the Admiralty—for what reason I know not—were never issued. I presume the present requisition of the Governor should now be at once communicated to the Admy with a request that it may be complied with.
The Naval force, & the additional Marines, sent to B. Columbia will surely now suffice for the protection of the Colony in all ways. Remind the Governor, in detail, of the extent of that force, & say that H.M. Govt hope & believe that it will be found sufficient.
Sir E. Lytton will notice P. 12 & 13 wherein it is said that no servants of the H.B.C. have been nominated to offices, & that there is a dearth of proper men in the Colony for colonial apptments. At the same time the Governor omits to mention any places except Stipendiary Magistrates which he wishes Sir Edward to fill up from home.
For Parlt.
ABd 31 Jany
I have already minuted on another paper 2 that an Atty Genl ought to go—& that it seems to me a small salary with practice ought to suffice.
HM Jan 31
C Feby 1
Other documents included in the file
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Draft reply, Lytton to Douglas, No. 30, 10 March 1859.
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Merivale to Secretary to the Admiralty, 5 March 1859, forwarding extracts of the despatch for consideration.
Minutes by CO staff
I believe that Sir J. Pakington is prepared for this application, if indeed he has not already anticipated it.
Other documents included in the file
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Draft reply, Lytton to Douglas, No. 20, 11 February 1859. 3